Redskins mailbag: Part 2

For Part 2 of the mailbag, I squeezed in a record eight questions, ranging from best player available talk to trading and the impact on the draft by the Ricky-Jean Francois signing. Enjoy.

John Keim: Not every board is the same. But let's say Amari Cooper is at the top, then I'd look to trade because there are more pressing holes that can be filled with excellent prospects. But if a trade can't be made then, yeah, you'd have to consider it. Here's why: Andre Roberts was just a guy last season. DeSean Jackson's durability as he progresses has to be a concern, and Pierre Garcon's cap number goes up next year. If they can't figure out how to use him this year, then why keep him around at a higher cost? So while they appear to be set with the top three, the picture could be much different a year from now. Still, this is a strong receiver draft -- and I think there is growing debate whether Cooper is even the best receiver in this class. I'd rather look for a receiver later to build depth and develop. Keim: Good question. There will be a handful in the first round outside of the top 10, but with some of them (Vic Beasley, for example), I'm not sure if their best fit is a 4-3 or 3-4. They could trade down in the first round and wait for a guy like Eli Harold from Virginia in the second round. I have not studied him, but he is a guy analysts have mentioned a few times -- his 10-yard split at the combine was under the 1.6 second mark teams desire. Keim: I'm guessing the hot spot for Landon Collins is around 15, but I have no idea for sure. In terms of pure talent, he's probably in the 15-25 range because there are big question marks about him in coverage, but he plays a position that is thin in the draft this year, so it's conceivable he'll go at the higher end of that range. If you trade down, you'd be wise to have two or three players you like because if you trade down for one, there's a good chance you'll end up disappointed. Keim: I can't say it happens often. The Eagles did send Donovan McNabb to the Redskins in 2011, but they clearly made the right move. A lot will depend on what the Redskins think of Marcus Mariota. If they don't like him, they might not care that he's in the division. If they think he's going to be a stud, then it wouldn't make much sense to make such a move unless you get an absolute haul in return. Another thought: If you think he's going to be a stud and you lack confidence in your current QBs, then ... Keim: I wrote a story about previous trades Thursday, so you can have an idea of what a team moving up that high would have to surrender. My guess is it would take five draft picks: Three this year and two in 2016. That's a hefty sum and, as we've seen here, those kind of trades can make or break careers. Keim: I think they will be active and make signings, but I don't know that any will be of the big-news variety (like Ndamukong Suh or Devin McCourty, etc). They did free up more than $9 million in cap space Friday, so that helps. And I wouldn't be surprised if most of their unrestricted free agents go elsewhere, so they will need to sign players. Keim: It shouldn't change their thinking. He's more of a rotational player, not a sure-fire starter by any means -- he was cut to save money, but you don't cut guys who are 28 and solid starters. But also, the only 3-4 defensive end who will be drafted in the top 10 is Leonard Williams. If he somehow falls to 5 and the Redskins don't draft him, I'd be shocked. The players that are mostly being discussed for them right now were ends in college but will be outside linebackers/pass rushers for the Redskins. Francois is not a pass rusher. Keim: Yes, I do. They can't count on Jordan Reed staying healthy and they need more blocking help. Logan Paulsen typically handles that role, but they need more from the position in general. They've shown interest in former Eagles tight end James Casey, who was cut this week.